BOSTON – A former member of the New England Family of La Cosa Nostra (NELCN) was arrested today in Florida after being indicted in the District of Massachusetts in connection with allegations that he obstructed a federal investigation into the murder of a Boston nightclub owner in the 1990s.
Robert P. DeLuca, 70, was indicted on one count of obstruction of justice and two counts of making false statements. He is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Florida.
According to the indictment, DeLuca is charged with lying to federal prosecutors and investigators investigating the 1993 disappearance of Stephen DiSarro who operated The Channel, a South Boston nightclub. In March 2016, the remains of DiSarro were recovered by federal authorities behind a mill in Providence, R.I. The indictment alleges that DiSarro disappeared in May 1993 after the involvement of then LCN boss Frank Salemme and Frank Salemme, Jr. with The Channel became the focus of a federal grand jury investigation.
DeLuca is also charged with lying to federal authorities about his knowledge of other organized crime murders. It is alleged that DeLuca made the false statements in connection with his cooperation with federal authorities in Rhode Island after he was charged with racketeering and arrested in 2011. Despite his cooperation, DeLuca lied about his knowledge of the disappearance of DiSarro and other LCN murders.
The charge of obstruction of justice provides for a sentence of no greater than 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. The charge of false statements provides for a sentence of no greater than five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
U.S. Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz for the District of Massachusetts; U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha for the District of Rhode Island; and Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division, made the announcement today. Assistance was provided by the Massachusetts State Police, Rhode Island State Police and Norfolk County District Attorney’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Fred M. Wyshak, Jr. of Ortiz’s Public Corruption Unit and Assistant U.S. Attorney William Ferland of Neronha’s Office.
The details contained in the indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.